Banned Biographies

Banned Biographies is an audio documentary series charting the careers of some of the most notorious bands ever to grace the world’s stages.

Interview with Chris Constantinou (Rude GRL + CC, One Thousand Motels, The Dandy Warhols, ex-Adam Ant, JackieOnAssid, The Wolfmen)

May 1st, 2022

On this special interview episode of the Banned Biographies podcast Tom Austin-Morgan talks to Chris Constantinou, who is probably better known to Adam Ant fan as Chris DeNiro - the bassist in Adam's post-Ants solo band.

Chris has also played in The Wolfmen with Marco Pirroni, JackieOnAssid, and One Thousand Motels with Rat Scabies of The Damned which cover everything from blues to dance music. In between these he's also played on songs and albums with Annabella Lwin from Bow Wow Wow, Guy Chambers before he started his partnership with Robbie Williams, The Slits, Sinéad O'Connor, Daler Mehndi, Holy Holy, Brant Bjork & Sean Wheeler, Andreas Grega, Nerina Pallot and Earl Slick and Bernard Fowler. He also sometimes plays flute live with The Dandy Warhols.

Currently, he is about the release a new mini-album called Femme Power with rapper, Jenna Dickens in a punk rap project called Rude GRL + CC. Femme Power will be available to stream and buy on the 6th of May 2022 and is released through Ingrooves (part of the Universal Music Group).  In June, they’ll also be releasing a double A-side through Cleopatra Records, the tracks are I’m Good (mixed by Nick Hodgson of the Kaiser Chiefs) and the second track is a version of Adam Ant’s Goody Two Shoes. So, keep your eyes peeled for those dropping.

On top of all this he also has stories of playing on Top of the Pops, Live Aid, convincing Guy Chambers not to give up on a career in music, and recording in the Palm Desert scene with members of various bands including Masters of Reality, Queens of the Stone Age, etc and all the madness involved in that, supporting King Crimson and Hawkwind as a 13-year-old and so much more

As you can see, Chris has lived a hell of a life and I feel like I only just scraped the surface. Hopefully, there'll be a follow up episode in the future. If you get a fraction of joy listening to our conversation as I did having it I'm sure you'll be supremely satisfied.

I'd like to thank Chris for being so generous with his time as well as for being so candid and warm. An extra special thank you must also go to my friend Rhiannon Ifans for setting this up.

Let me know what you thought of it by commenting on the social media post, and be sure to share it - and the podcast as a whole - with your friends.

Find Rude GRL + CC here:

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Find One Thousand Motels here:

https://onethousandmotels.com/ 

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Contact

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

Them Fantasies and The Sewer Cats Round Up, Punk Rock News and Wet Leg Album Review

April 25th, 2022

Once again, Tom Austin-Morgan, your host is back to let you know what’s been going on this month since the last two episodes went out, what's going on the world of punk rock and what you can expect from next months episode.

Firstly, I’d like to extend my grateful thanks to both Them Fantasies and The Sewer Cats. Both conversations were really interesting, enlightening and fun, I hope you’ll agree, and despite the fact that the music they make is poles apart, both bands' conviction in their art and enthusiasm when talking about it were utterly infectious and inspiring. 

Previous guest, Louise Aubrie, has relocated to LA to start writing and recording new material. Meanwhile, she’s released a new video for the song Dark from the album Antonio which she came on the show to talk about last year. Check it out in the back catalogue.

I've guested on the Love That Album podcast, which is a brilliant show that I’ve listened to for years. The host, Maurice, and a guest – in this case me – discuss a variety of great albums from the rock, jazz or folk genres in some depth.  The episode is available now, which is apt because it corresponds with the 44th anniversary of the first Rock Against Racism concert at Victoria Park on the 30th April 1978 which featured, among others, the Tom Robinson Band. The episode is about their first album Power In The Darkness, although it also deals with the political and environmental history of the time because a lot of that fed into the themes of the album. It was a delightful chat with someone who has such a wealth of knowledge and made me feel most welcome, do go and find Love That Album podcast and listen not just to the episode I’m on, but rifle through the back catalogue, there’ll certainly be a lot you’ll be familiar with, but there are some great surprises to be had too. Thanks Maurice!

I review just the one album this month; Wet Leg's debut, self-titled album that came out at he beginning on the month. Is it full of repetitive, flash in the pan indie nothingness or is it as goods as I hoped it would be?

By sure to get in touch on social media or email and do to Apple Music to leave a rating and review, it's the podcast's second birthday, after all! Until next time, take care and stay safe.

Contact

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

Interview with The Sewer Cats

April 15th, 2022

On this special interview episode of the Banned Biographies podcast, Tom talks to The Sewer Cats - a two-piece punk band made up of drummer and singer Cass and guitarist Josh.

Ferocious, fuzzy and feline-inclined, The Sewer Cats are an explosive Manchester-based punk duo who deliver riotous tunes of patriarchy-smashing fury. Their short and snappy songs have been described as ‘catchy and scathing’, bursting with hooky riffs drenched in fuzz and aggressive riot-grrrl vocals, all served up with a big helping of sass.

Their new album, Cute Aggression is out TODAY on Manchester-based DIY non-profit punk label, TNSrecords. Go and find it and The Sewer Cats’ back catalogue wherever you stream or listen to your music as well as on the TNSrecords website.

Spotify

Apple Music

bandcamp

Twitter: @thesewercats

Facebook: @thesewercatsband

Instagram: @thesewercatsband

A big thank you to Cass and Josh for their time and for being so easy to get on with. I very much look forward to meeting them in a couple of months time on their tour. Do try and find out where they're playing near you and make the effort to see them, and support them by buying some merch.

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Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

 

Interview with Them Fanatsies

April 1st, 2022

On this interview episode of the Banned Biographies podcast Tom Austin-Morgan talks to L.A.-based indie rock band Them Fantasies.

The band is made up of bassist and singer Dominic Cannarella, guitarist Eric McCoy and drummer Max Meizlish. They met while at music college in Boston, Massachusetts and cut their teeth playing live and finding their sound in Valencia, Spain as part of their course. During 2020 they relocated to LA and while living together have honed their sound and their production skills to infuse a modern pop slickness to their funk tinged, indie rock sound.

During the pandemic they've found an excited new audience on Tik Tok, released three singles in 2021, and recently put out their new EP “How Modest”, which sees them tackle more socially conscious themes like toxic masculinity and the crassness of materialism.

They're a lovely and very talented group of lads and I wish them every success. Go and check out their music wherever you stream or listen to it and, if you do, let them know I sent you!

Find them here:

Website: https://www.themfantasies.com/

Instagram and Twitter: @them_fantasies

Facebook: @ThemFantasies

Youtube

Spotify

Thank you to Jeremy Saunders from BIZ 3 Publicity for organising this interview.

Until next time, take care of yourselves and stay safe.

Contact

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

X-Ray Spex Review, Punk Rock News and Album Reviews

March 30th, 2022

Your host Tom Austin-Morgan is back to let you know what's been going on since the last episode and what you can expect from the next one... or possibly two!

There's also all the news from the world of punk including stories about KRS-One, Steve Ignorant, Alice Bag, Richie Ramone, Loose Articles, Sick Of It All, Blondie and The Damned, Bauhaus, Shane MacGowan, The Sewer Cats, John Doe, MC5, Flogging Molly, Dropkick Murphys, Weezer, The Last Gang, The Lunachicks, The Gaslight Anthem and Roxy Music.

There's also a load of acts that have cancelled their gigs in Ukraine and Russia due to the continuing war there and, sadly, there have been a number of deaths as well.

Additionally, there are reviews of three albums: Love Sux by Avril Lavigne (Is she cynically going back to pop punk from her more recent acoustic pop sound due to the resugence of early-2000s pop punk?), Torpedo by Feeder (have they finally gone back to the heavy grunge of their early albums like they keep saying they will?) and Never Let Me Go by Placebo (is this their best album since The Meds?).

By sure to get in touch on social media or email and do to Apple Music to leave a rating and review, it's the podcast's second birthday, after all! Until next time, take care and stay safe.

Contact

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

Identity - The X-Ray Spex Story

March 1st, 2022

The girl who would grow up to be Poly Styrene, Marianne Joan Elliott-Said was one of three mixed race siblings living with their single mother and growing up in South London in the 1960s, which was - to put it lightly - not an environment known for racial tolerance.

She always felt different, not just in the way the she looked but in the way she thought too. A conventional life was not for her.

After building a relationship with an older man who also became her manager, she struck out to form a band, inspired - as so many young punks were - by watching the Sex Pistols. X-Ray Spex was born shortly afterwards.

Between 1976 and 1979, X-Ray Spex released just five singles and one album. Nevertheless, "Oh Bondage Up Yours!", is now acknowledged as a classic punk rock single and Germfree Adolescents is widely acclaimed as a classic album of the punk rock genre.

X-Ray Spex was one of the most inventive, original and genuinely exciting groups to emerge during the punk era. And fronted by Poly Styrene, the first woman of colour in the UK to front a successful rock band who was without question, one of Punk's most influential, colourful and greatest artists whose effect is still felt on bands today as well as the riot grrrl and afropunk movements.

Though she fought with mental health issues throughout here life as well as getting heavily involved in religion for a long period, it was cancer that eventually took her from us at tb he age of just 53. However, in her short life she introduced the world to a new sound of rebellion, using her unconventional voice to sing about identity, consumerism, postmodernism, and everything she saw unfolding in late 1970s Britain, with a rare prescience. And contrary to her claims in the song I Am A Cliché, she certainly wasn't.

Join me on the psychedelic, day-glo story of X-Ray Spex.

Contact

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

Leo Ulph Interview Review, Punk Rock News and Tom’s Birthday

February 22nd, 2022

On this episode of the Banned Biographies podcast your host, Tom Austin-Morgan, and talks about what’s been going on in the last month and what you can expect from the next episode.

Firstly I’d like to thank Leo Ulph once more for the time he took to talk to me on last month’s interview episode, he’s such a nice bloke who I think is so engaging to listen to.

There has been a slew of reviews on Apple Music this month, all from the UK and all with five stars, so I give them a shout out, it was a really nice surprise to get so many in such a short space of time, and I noticed that the show charted higher in the Apple Music rankings, so there definitely is a correlation between the number of reviews and how visible the show is in the search, so keep it up, guys, it really does help.

As promised, I debut a news section from the world of punk from February including stories about The Dwarves, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominations, Angels And Airwaves, The Undertones, IDLES, The Last Gang, Jesse Michaels and Tim Armstrong performing a live version of Operation Ivy's "Sound System", Cancer Bats, Killing Joke, Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong's car being stolen then found, New Found Glory, Beavis And Butt-Head, Dropkick Murphys, The Real McKenzies, Cro-Mags, Fontaines D.C., Frank Turner scoring his first number one album with FTHC and a review of the album, and Adam Ant.

I also talk about my birthday on the 20th February where I celebrated by playing two shows within 24 hours with my very first punk band, High Frequency our first in about 11 years. The reception we had from both audiences we played to over the weekend we really warm and engaged, people genuinely seemed to enjoy the songs we were playing, some of which are 19 years old now! So maybe covers aren’t the way forward after all? I’d like to thank Ant and Corky as well as our wives and partners for putting up with the disruption to their weekends and especially to the people who put us on the line ups for these two shows and finally to all the people who listened and even bough CDs which have been gathering dust in my loft for the last decade! If you want to find us, we’re on Facebook and Instagram @high_frequency_rocks or you can listen to that album by searching Welcome To Apathyville on Spotify.

Until next time, take careand stay safe.

Contact

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

Interview with Leo Ulph (Wake Up Leo, Presenter and Producer at BBC Radio)

February 1st, 2022

On this special interview episode of the Banned Biographies podcast, Tom chats with Leo Ulph who fronts the band Wake Up Leo. However, he's probably better known as the presenter of BBC Radio Kent's Upload show, where he has featured clips for the documentary episodes of this very podcast along with a host of other podcasts, poets, bands and artists over the last couple of years. Leo also produces broadcasting legend Gabby Roslin's show on BBC Radio London.

This conversation covers all sorts of musical experiences as both a fan, a broadcaster and a player, including the question 'why is Ed Sheeran so popular?', how meeting your heroes can be a good thing, how he got into the radio business and the power of saying 'yes' (and then working really hard!).

During the course of the interview we also manage to draw a line from his early days of playing music and telling jokes between his early songs, for fear they weren't good enough, to the style in which he presents his radio show.

You can find him on Facebook, Twitter (@WakeUpLeo) and Instagram (@wakeupleo_1). Wake Up Leo's website is www.wakeupleo.com and you can also find them on Facebook, Soundcloud, ReverbNation, Spotify, and Apple Music

I think you'll agree that Leo's a great guy and really engaging, and I'd like to thank him very much for his time, especially as he was getting over a Covid infection at the time, what a trooper... and just think, if he's this chipper when he's feeling under the weather, imagine how much more energy he has when he's 100%!

Thanks for listening, stay safe and take care.

Contact

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

Stiff Little Fingers And 2021 In Review

January 27th, 2022

On this episode of the Banned Biographies podcast, Tom gives a recap of the reactions to last month's Stiff Little Fingers documentary, the first documentary episode in about six months!

A change to the normal running of things is proposed so that Tom keeps in touch with new music after a year of brilliant album, EP and single releases, most of which passed him by. So, Tom looks back at some of them - as many as he's gone back to listen to, anyway - from the baffling resurrection of Nu Metal to the great punk, indie, ska and rock music that came out in the last 12 months.

Please do get in touch via the social links below to let us know what your favourite albums and track were in 2021 and what you're looking forward to in 2022. Also, if you are in a band or make music, we'd love to showcase you on these episodes and don't worry, as you'll hear from Tom's list, this is a judgement free zone!

Please do reach out to Banned Biographies on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or by email as well as leaving those ratings and reviews on Apple Podcasts, but more than anything else take care and stay safe.

Contact

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

Suspect Device - The Incendiary Stiff Little Fingers

January 1st, 2022

Founded in Belfast in 1977 out of the ashes of a heavy metal covers band, Stiff Little Fingers and their manager, Gordon Ogilvie, wrote hard-hitting, scathing songs about The Troubles in Northern Ireland. This was in stark contrast to their contemporaries like The Undertones who chose to ignore The Troubles to sing about teenage angst and chocolate bars.

Stiff Little Fingers was championed by the legendary John Peel and released the iconic Inflammable Material album, which became the first independently released album to chart in the UK, reaching number 14 and achieving silver-selling status.

The band changed its style over the next two albums which lost them a lot of fans and, due to the popularity of synthesiser-based pop music over guitar-driven bands in the 1980s, Stiff Little Fingers broke up in 1983.

A cynical, money-spinning reunion tour in 1987 saw the band enjoy better attended shows than ever and so they decided to give it another go. To this day Stiff Little Fingers continues to tour the world as well as recording and releasing albums - the latest of which became the band's first number one on the BBC Rock Albums Chart. 

Join me as I tell the (somewhat expletive filled) story of a 45-year-old band that is arguably more popular now than ever!

Contact

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

E-mail: bannedbiographies@gmail.com

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